Al Fresco Wedding in Santa Barbara
July 11, 2014
RomanticBackyardSpring Weddings
Insanely romantic tidbit of the day? This sweet couple shared their first kiss high up in the Himalayas after a group hike to Mt. Everest Base Camp. Swoon. So, it's no surprise when they made the decision to tie the knot five years later, they did it in style. With Michael & Anna Costa Photography behind the lens, this gallery is a glimpse into all the romance.
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From Michael and Anna Costa Photography...Dan and Lauren met in December of 2008 in Kathmandu, Nepal, where they joined the same tour group to hike to Mt. Everest Base Camp.  Dan is originally from Birmingham, England, and Lauren is originally from Bakersfield, California (but was living in Los Angeles at the time), so it seemed like fate that they both happened to travel alone to the same distant city on the same dates with the same goal. These exotic circumstances meant that Dan & Lauren’s first date was kind of a group date (there were 8 other travelers on the hike, plus guides and sherpas, who were with them at all times), and it lasted for almost 12 straight days.  Instead of the traditional flowers, the first gifts that Dan gave Lauren were a piece of string to tie her solar battery charger onto the back of her backpack, and an extra roll of toilet paper, since she had been suffering from food poisoning the first week of the hike and had run low on her own supply!  Since they had no privacy amongst the group on the hike (and no showers for 9 days of the trip), all they could do was walk, talk, laugh and learn a whole lot about one another.  Although Dan didn’t work up the courage to make a romantic move until almost the end of their journey, they shared their first kiss in Lukla (high up in the Himalayas), and after the pair parted ways in Kathmandu on New Years’ Eve, Dan was smitten enough that he booked a trip to California and came to visit Lauren in L.A. the week after she returned home. He met her parents on that trip, then she went straight back to England 2 weeks later to meet his family, and they realized things were serious.

Over the next few years, Dan and Lauren took turns giving up their homes/lives/friends and moving overseas to keep the relationship going - Lauren first quit her law firm job in L.A. and moved to England with her dog, George, in June 2009 for almost a year, then Lauren’s UK visa ran out, and in late 2010 Dan sold his electrical company in England and moved to California to try out the beach life.  After struggling with immigration issues and enduring some long gaps of time apart, they decided to get engaged and remain in California to begin their life as a married couple.

Although they were officially married in San Francisco nearly a year earlier for immigration purposes (with only the bride’s friend, Cara, as a witness), the wedding celebration in Montecito was the first time Dan and Lauren’s parents were able to meet one another during their 5-year romance. Dan and Lauren agreed the wedding day was magical, and a great way to bring the English and American families together. The private Montecito home where the wedding was held is owned by the bride’s mother and step-father (and was completed just prior to the wedding), so the bride’s mother worked tirelessly to finish up all of the landscaping and home decor in time for the big day! The home may be available to rent for weddings and other special celebrations in the future, so stay tuned!

Dan and Lauren now reside in Venice, CA, with their 2 dogs, George & Mia, where they are remodeling their new home. While he is not out training for and competing in triathlons and marathons, Dan is working on setting up a new electrical contracting company in L.A., while Lauren works as a commercial real estate lawyer for a small firm in Santa Monica.